Mars Inc. announced last week that it will acquire specialist chocolatier Hotel Chocolat for £534 million ($662 million), according to Reuters. Hotel Chocolat said the deal would allow the brand to "grow further and faster," including overseas. The deal is expected to close in January.
Founded two decades ago, Hotel Chocolat’s goal was to “make chocolate exciting” and bring ethical, affordable, luxury chocolate to the British High Street. The company has over 130 stores.
"Partnering with Mars opens up the possibilities that those things will be a lot easier and quicker," Hotel Chocolat's CEO Angus Thirlwell said in an interview.
According to Reuters, Thirlwell also said that he is confident that Mars will be a great cultural fit for the company, citing commitments to sustainability and quality.
"This is something that's all about growth. It's not about cost paring or anything like that," he said, adding that he expected all 3,000 Hotel Chocolat staff to be kept on.
Thirlwell plans to continue leading the company for the next five years under Mars’ ownership.